RIDE II tax on restaurants, hotels, retail expires Thursday

Published: Apr. 30, 2014 at 8:37 PM EDT|Updated: May. 1, 2014 at 11:01 AM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The Ride II or "Penny Sales Tax" expired at midnight in Horry County, but don't expect to see that penny tax removed when you go out to eat, shop or book a hotel Thursday. It's up to each and every business, restaurant, and hotel has to take the initiative to make sure they aren't charging you extra, but business owners say it's a complicated process to make sure they're not still charging you.

Some cash registers will need to be reprogrammed in order to reflect the new tax brackets. The issue is that the person who's in charge of that will have to physically come to each business, and with all businesses trying to make the change Thursday, it will take some time.

"I'm sure there's hundreds if not thousands around the county that require somebody to program them other than the business owner, so it might take a couple of days," said Chris Walker with the Oceanfront Merchants Association.

Horry County Councilman Gary Loftus thinks it may take even longer, and that some businesses may just keep charging as long as they can.

"At the end of the day with their tax returns, they'll have a little bit of change in their pocket," said Loftus.

The longer it takes, the longer you're paying the extra penny.

"So I'd suggest that you look at your receipt," explained Walker. "And make sure you weren't charged that extra penny because I don't know how they're going to handle it all at once."

Knowing how much you need to pay can be confusing, because depending on where you are, there's different local taxes. The key is to know that you should be paying 1 percent less.

Here's the list:

Myrtle Beach (is different because it already has higher taxes):

Before: Prepared food 11.5%, Hotels 13%, retail 9%

Now: 10.5%, 12% and 8%

Municipal Area (NMB, Conway, Aynor, Surfside, and Atlantic Beach):

Before: 10.5%, 12%, 8%

Now: 9.5%, 11%, 7%

Unincorporated Horry County:

Before: 10.5%, 12%, 8%

Now: 9.5%, 11%, 7%


Before: 9.0%, 10.5%, 7%

Now: 8.0%, 9.5%, 6%

If someone thinks they are being charged the tax incorrectly, then they need to ask to speak with a manager or contact the South Carolina Department of Revenue

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